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​The Black Rats Of London

This song is by Bruce Hornsby and appears on the album Levitate (2009).

In our beautiful pursuit of manifest destiny
We give ourselves great credit, we thank the Good Lord so earnestly
But something's been omitted by the writers of history
Now stand up all unsung heroes who made this world for you and me

Jamestown
Night crawlers cleared the forests of seedlings, nuts and leaves
And everything everywhere dried up and the natives got the dry heaves
Mosquitoes brought malaria and bees brought their hives
And the Indians got less scarier with yellow skin and eyes

Hoorah, hooray, the black rats of London
They crossed the sea for you and me
Let's raise a glass so thankfully

Hail, hail, hooray, the black rats of London
Made the long treacherous passage to
Spread their natural juices, a gift to you, a gift to you

Yorktown
Parasites decimated the red army of Cornwallis and his flock
Standing weakly on Yorktown battlefield with measles and small pox
Horses, hogs, chickens and dogs and John Rolfe's prized worms
Divine intervention, bacterial strains from imported English dirt

Hoorah, hooray, the black rats of London
They crossed the sea for you and me
Let's raise a glass so thankfully

Hail, hail, hooray, the black rats of London
Made the long treacherous passage to
Spread their natural juices, a gift to you

Natural juices, yes a gift to you
Hoorah, hooray, hoorah, hooray
Hail, hail, hooray, hoorah, hooray, ray, ray, ray

Hoorah, hooray, the black rats of London
They crossed the sea for you and me
Let's raise a glass so thankfully

Hail, hail, hooray, the black rats of London
They made the long treacherous passage to
Spread their natural juices, a gift to you

The black rats of London
They crossed the sea for you and me
Let's raise a glass so thankfully

Hail, hooray, the black rats of London
Made the long treacherous passage to
Spread their natural juices, a gift to you, yes a gift to you

Pat yourself on the back, you did a great job
And the black rats of London made such a glorious, vicious mob
Sorry Rene it's just not true, paramecium's have feelings too

Where were the black rats when we needed them the most?
There were slave owners to infect
And the Joe Mengeles of the American West

Written by:

Bruce Randall Hornsby

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